South Africa considers merging 3 state-owned airlines

South African Airways

South Africa’s government is considering merging its three state-owned airlines into one entity and offering a 25 per cent stake of the holding company to a private equity partner, a cabinet minister said on Wednesday.

The loss-making South African Airways, its low-cost arm Mango and SAA Express, which services smaller towns, are struggling to remain profitable amid increased competition and rising operational costs.

“I believe the answer to all of it lies in how we rationalise the three companies.

”It also depends on how we bring in a 25 per cent shareholder to help us with both management as well as on finances,” Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown told a parliamentary committee.